Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Words, words, words....

So, I have been reading books all my life. Well, ever since I can remember. My dad was head of the local library and through this priviledge I spent quite a lot of my childhood in the company of the written word. Everyone in my family read and to me it seemed like I was surrounded by books.

I still read as much as I can get away with.

Growing up in the fifties and sixties reading was probably a more normal way to spend ones freetime, whereas today there are many supplementary choices like ebooks, audiobooks, movies, televisionseries etc. and access to these can be had on our smartphones, computers, tablets and TV.

Now I am not putting any of these options down.

Each of them has pros and cons and as society developes, as well as technology, we move on embracing even more sophisticated ways of storytelling and factfinding and -learning. So, logically there is nothing wrong with this evolution of how information is being delivered. And I am by no means a ludite, as my blog proves.

But for me books have a charm that no technological invention will ever be able to provide.

The feel of the paper, pages turning, the sweet smell of the printed texture, the quiet atmosphere as I delve into the written word and the complete surrender to the world of the story as it unfolds before my eyes and in my mind.

I am at peace.

There is no humming from electrical equipment, no distraction of my attention wondering if there is a mail on the way or an sms etc., no lighted background interrupting my melatonin-production and no wifi messing with my natural brainwaves.

In short to me books represent a sweet calmness where I can immerse myself  in a parallel timeline cocreated by the author and myself, completely unique and blissfully void of any interference.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Finetuning.....

I frequently rearrange my furniture, usually when I feel its time to dust of behind my books it seems like the perfect time. I love the newness of this, looking at everything from a new angle. It's refreshing and puts everything in a new light.

I do this too with my priorities in life.
I find that sticking with the same ideas year in and year out stifles my inspiration and motivation. I take a look at where I am at and then I check with my personal, and spiritual developement and do a bit of rearranging.

It feels like the right thing for me to reevaluate from time to time and, just like with my furniture, get a fresh look at things. During this kind of process I am sometimes amazed at discovering new and exciting ways to combine ideas and perceptions. By creating new connections in my way of seeing my life and myself I finetune old ideas and see new ones arise.

It even acts as a wonderfull way of solving problems and finding solutions and shortcuts through life's many opportunities that I have somehow stored away with the intent to be processed at a later date.

Sometimes life just needs to be looked at from a different angle in order to come together beautifully.

And sometimes I just need to move stuff around in order to find what I am looking for - right here in front of me.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Merging website with blog


I decided to merge my homepage with my blog. Hence the new earlier posts (I noted the original date of publishing from my website).

It is so much easier to work with and then I can integrate my literary interests, the movies I watch with the journalistic explorations. I went to a blog "read 52 books in 52 weeks" and it all seems to fit so beautifully.

I will be finetuning links, labels and pictures as I go along, but my next mission for today is delve into a book, and maybe Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged is just the thing today :-)

Friday, February 17, 2017

As I said....

“As soon as we start putting our thoughts into words and sentences everything gets distorted, language is just no damn good—I use it because I have to, but I don’t put any trust in it. We never understand each other.”
Marcel Duchamp

 “People who judge others tell more about Who They Are, than Who They Judge.”
Donald L. Hicks

"It's amazing how some people have never met me or know who I am, but based on a few things they read here & there & rumours, they have formulated a new personality for me & all the things I've never done they passionately speak about....I find it funny and entertaining now. I guess we can't spend our lives fighting rumours...we just have to work hard & then rumours get proven wrong on it's own as a by product. No point explaining repeatedly. Just do our work & show results!!"
~ Tsem Rinpoche


I just had a run-in with someone who had completely misunderstood my intent as well as what I said and it really saddened me. I immediately thought to put it right, to make sure that the misunderstanding was cleared up, and what I encountered was this underlying deep doubt about me as a person based upon their (as I learned) lack of knowledge about me and my ethics.
I know this negative reaction is not about me at all but more about the person. It still hurts though. Like a stain that won't wash away completely - there will allways remain this shadow, a memory of something gone wrong. And a feeling of 'how could you think this about me' - I guess I will never know.

The thing is that no matter how carefully we try to communicate, the words we say will only be recieved to the extent it meets a resonance of similar understanding in the person we are communicating with. And it does not allways do that.
As Martin Buber said "we must understand the same by the same in order to communicate well".

Preconcieved ideas based on experience in the one we are communicating with ultimately carve the outcome. And only the amount of love or willingness to be open between the communicators will determine wether the misunderstanding is carved in stone or sand.

I have allways had the idea that everybody has their own dictionary. And each and every word is linked with some kind of understanding and experience which then colours the understanding of any communication. It is not a difference like black and white, allthough it is possible, it is more in the nuance of the interpretations of the words we speak.

And as Marcel Duchamp mentioned in the quote above "We never understand each other.”What we do instead, I will add hopefully, is create new meaning as the words are formed and bounced off the preconceptions of the person we are communicating with.

Still, with all this it is a wonder that we find understanding through communication at all.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

As time goes by....

So, my dad crossed over yesterday. 90 years, a good long life. Except for the past maybe 8 years, he was a pillar of the community and being the head of the local library he also initiated many cultural events. On some of these he worked closely with my mom and they were both kind and giving people. They gave my siblings and I a wonderfull childhood.

We were there yesterday. And allthough he was on morphine, due to pneumonia, and suffering from alzheimers as he had been for some years, we did our best to create a comfortable and loving atmosphere. So his passing was as easy as it could be.

Before his passing I/we sat with him and read from his favourite author, talked to him about the wonderfull vacations we had as a family when we were children, reminded him of our love for him, and also our mom, who passed on 10 years ago and who he missed very much. I told him what a great father he is, and let him know that we are all good and that it was OK for him to let go when he felt the time was right.

And then later it happened very quickly. It seemed that one moment he was there, lucid, silently sending his goodbyes and I love yous. And then he was gone.

It was the best thing for my dad. And seen in that light we are all relieved. But now that he is gone the stories are also slowly vanishing. The stories my parents knew from 60 years ago when we were children, things they only remembered. They are all gone. And their own stories seen from their view are gone. We have ideas, remnants of what we have been told, but they are secondhand and coloured in that way.

This is life.

The life that is forever changing and renewing itself and when we are gone the stories of the past will take a new turn and be coloured by new perspectives.

We are all these stories. Molded in time and coloured by each and everyone we come in contact with. And that to me is beautifull.

My dads life, and my moms, influenced me and my story in ways I haven't even discovered yet and I am gratefull for being part of their story which has left a wonderfull, loving and giving mark in the world.

Blessings.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Learning curve

Well, I was discussing school with a friend of mine today and allthough we do differ somewhat in our opinion as to how learning could be acquired, we certainly were in aggreement that the schoolsystem as such could do with some changes. Not only as far as the subjects taught in school, but also in the way they are taught.

All my life I have had a preference to the Summerhill way of teaching. In short the children are living in a democracy where teachers staff and children make decisions in the democratic tradition. The children are given as much freedom as they wish in relation to whether or not they want to follow classes. The only rule is that, if they choose to play or gather information away from the classes, they don't disturb the children who have decided to attend classes. Some children choose to avoid classteachings for long periods, sometimes years, other for months. But the thing is, that once they are motivated through curiosity about a subject they learn fast. They will learn everything and more in a short period of time.

My thinking is this, children are curious by nature and each and everyone of them has their own way of learning. Some are inspired through playing or music or practical work and others find learning through living with and being inspired by the people around them. And left to their own devices their own natural instincts they will learn everything imaginable at their own pace and in their own time.
I find that schools generally are extremely uninspiring, boring and downright useless when seen in the context of learning about life.

The children are usually divided by age and not by interests or abilities and talents and so the result is that the individuality of the children are not taken into account much less respected as it is now in our public schools.

What we are offering today is the same as it was a hundred years ago. It is the same system and of course the subjects have been updated, but the methods haven't. And most young people end up leaving school molded into a frame which does not allow for creativity and individuality. And it certainly does not allow for knowledge about life and living in the world as humans.

It would be far more constructive, inspiring and fun if we dropped the schoolsystem all together and instead used the massive amount of money in including the children in the activities in the communities where they would have the choice to recieve knowledge about the subjects that would support their individual motivation for learning.

I think the result would be children, who not only would be more knowledgeable about a variety of subects, but who would also become far better of when it comes to participate constructively in the community and they would certainly have reached a higher level of lifeskills.

Now I do know this would mean a total change in society, but if we expect to create a better future for the children, then we also have to change the way we educate them, or better yet they show us how to educate them.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Changing the timeline

I was just thinking, the current state of affairs taken into consideration - you know the world and all, what would happen if we could go back in time and change one thing. Would it actually have an effect or would things merely take a smal detour and then someone else or something else would emerge and the endresult would be the same or very similar to the one we are experiencing today.
Now timetravel is a dubious affair at best. I am assuming that if travelling in time is a fact at some point in history, then by logical thinking we have timetravellers from the future here right now. Of course I am taking for granted that any timetraveller from the future would find this era interesting enough to come here for a visit.
Could we in fact change the world by altering one thing in history? Or would it just result in a minor hiccup in the flow of events only to return to the original flow of things?
And what could be changed? What would be a significant event that, if altered, could steer the world in a different direction?
A few of the wars come to mind. Or one or two leaders of nations?
What would have happened if Lenin say, just as an example, instead of initiating a revolution had focused his energy on philosophy and writing? Or what about Napoleon if he instead had stayed at home and started a small vineyard? Or what about Jesus, if he wasn't crucified, but lead a quiet life of contemplation promoting his theology to a smaller circle of faithfull devotees?
I could mention many different persons or scenarios, but the fact remains that I don't think it would have had a lasting effect or indeed change anything in our current time, well maybe we would have a few million more inhabitants, but I think thats about it.
I have this inkling that someone else or something else would just pop up at some time replacing the changed events ensuring more or less the same result we wittness today.
It is not a defaitistic point of view, but merely the hunch that history per se is not responsible for the way things turn out, for better or for worse, we are. It is us, humanity as such, who are responsible for keeping things the way they are. We are the ones who settle for the dealt hand and try to weedle ourselves out of it by using outdated tools, namely the same tools which has been used for centuries creating the situation, instead of taking a fresh look at things and then applying a more peacefull and friendly attitude.
Well, I am not claiming this is going to be easy, and probably in the end not possible, but it is certainly worth a thought or two.
So, what would I change if I could? I am not sure, but I would be thrilled to have more unicorns in the world ;-) that would just make a whole lot of things easier to swallow.